Turtle Beach does come up with nice gaming headsets that can be quite comfortable. Today, we are going to look at the Ear Force Stealth 420X wireless gaming headset for XBOX One. It comes with nice over the ear cups that are lined with a green colour fabric band in contrast to all black design.
You get a pretty mediocre sliding cardboard cover with a plain white box. Inside the box you will find a smaller, flat box where cables will be stored, a flexible microphone extension, user manual and of course, the Stealth 420X headset. There will also be a USB wireless transmitter that will plug in to your XBOX One or your PC, whichever you prefer to use.
The headset is made with tough plastic and although the joints may feel a little weak, they are not. Overall, the all plastic design does make this headset quite light in weight and that is an important factor when it comes to offering comfort. The headband has a nice perforated foam which will not hurt the top of your skull. The ear cups attached to the headband can swivel quite a lot. Nevertheless, the 420X feels lot sturdier than the predecessor 500X which was released last year.
There is perforated foam in the ear cups as well which feel soft and comfortable while wearing. You can also go on for hours playing your favourite game and at some point you might even forget you are wearing an headset.
While powering it on, you have to press the left ear cup which has a small power button on the inside. After holding the button for approximately 1 second, the Turtle beach logo will begin to glow green indicating that it has been powered up. If you are wearing the headset, you will also hear a voice saying “Powering on”. The same logo turns red while charging. Speaking of charging, there is a micro USB connector where you should connect the given cable; that plugs into your charger and charges your headset. The cable that comes in the box is quite short, so you will have to arrange something of your own. On the left ear cup you will also find a 3.5mm jack where the microphone plugs in. It can be bent and adjusted just the way you like it.
The whole headset powers up with AAA batteries and that is what adds to the weight. Batteries will last for 15 hours on a single charge. That should be enough for a usual weekend gaming session. If you run out of batteries or wish to plug the headphone into your phone, you can do so by using the provided 3.5mm cable with in line mic and remote control.
We are still not done talking about the controls. Apart from the microphone and charging port, you have a volume control wheel for the microphone and a separate volume control wheel for the speakers. In addition to that you can press a button to turn your mic on and off, which again brings up a voice indicating “microphone on/off”. Finally, there is a button to switch between 4 EQ preset. All of these controls are located on the left ear piece which is quite indicative of where all the wireless and audio circuitry is located.
Getting it to run
It is very, very simple to get it running. All you need to do is take the USB stick and plug it inside the XBOX One. The status LED will begin blinking rapidly indicating that it is waiting for a connection.
Turn on your headset and you will find the status LED on the left ear piece will also be blinking rapidly. Press the pair button on the USB stick and it will scan the Bluetooth frequency band and pair it with your headset in matter of seconds or quicker. Once paired, you will hear a voice saying so and the status LEDs on the USB stick and the headset will becoming constantly ON.
In comparison to the more expensive, older version Stealth 500X, the Stealth 420X definitely performs better in the sound department. Both the headphones have 50mm neodymium drivers that is an essential for punchy bass and responsive (sharp) sounds. The bass is naturally great on the 420X and I believe you would not need to boost it further. Explosions will sound cool with these headphones.
There is one feature which the 420X lacks in comparison to the older 500X; the 7.1 surround sound. Those who take game sounds seriously will not be really happy, but the sound quality and simulated surround sound is still “okay”. It is not like the audio will sound bad.
During casual usage and even during gaming, you will notice the sound is much sharper and feels a lot clearer in comparison to many other headsets. Try wearing these headsets while playing Far Cry 4 and listening to Pagan Min’s speech which will leave you awe struck because of the quality of audio and the environmental effects. Explosions in Battlefield 4 will feel punchy and deep and will definitely make your heart thump for a moment.
Using these headphones with no EQ will yield a “pure” experience although the treble and bass boosting preset will add some positive enhancement to your gaming experience.
There are indeed better headphones out there from Sennheiser and Kingston but they are not all wireless. Apparently, when it comes to making a choice between the best and affordable, Stealth 420X stands out with a balance of both factors, being available for just $149.95 on Amazon.com
Speakers: 50mm with Neodymium Magnets
Frequency Response: 20Hz – 20kHz
Earpad Material: Perforated Synthetic Leather with Foam Cushion